Why I Love To Crochet
Before discovering crochet, I had been simultaneously working as an options trader and an entrepreneur originating and leading multiple businesses. There are days when things can feel pretty darned hectic – often in the midst of a million forces pulling me in many directions.
I Spent a Bachelorette Weekend Completely Sober on a Party Island - Here’s What Happened
“Oh I don’t drink really, I’m just here to have fun.” The burly best-man at the country cover bar gave me a baffled look. At this point in the weekend, I was used to it.
What Chapter Are You On?
I’m beginning to understand that we live our lives in chapters, short and long, each chapter a different story. I want my life to be a great read. In early chapters, we’re growing up, learning our likes and dislikes, and discovering who we are.
How to Defeat Writer's Block Once and For All
It's the perfect day to write a new Vocal story. You've scheduled out the morning; the coffee-filled ceramic cup feels warm in your hands as you glide to your desk. Sparrows chirp in the distance as excited fingers place themselves on a colorful keyboard.
The Authentic Human—Real Vibes Only
My dream is for every person who sits in my chair to feel comfortable being themselves and expressing exactly who they are without judgment. I find this is something that is rarely found in today's culture. Anyone can say they are accepting but making someone feel [accepted] is different. -Mary, Owner of Snipsnip Vibes
Vocal: The American Ninja Warrior of Writing
I've never really been into sports. I find them boring and frankly, it's annoying to see someone getting paid millions of dollars for playing a game. However, I love American Ninja Warrior.
Today, I woke up with butterflies in my stomach, and hope in my heart as I opened the internet browser on my phone and typed in “Vocal/Challenges”. I’d been impatiently waiting for days to find out the results of the Dystopian “Doomsday Diary” Challenge. I’d submitted four stories, with one in particular that I was so excited about. So, as I skimmed down the page to the recent winners, my exuberant smile started to dim as the reality hit: I didn’t win… again. I read the winning story and it was indeed fantastic, but there was still a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes when I realized it wasn’t mine.
A Year With Vocal
After writing over a hundred stories, a lot of people ask or wonder “how have you written so much?” and honestly, that’s an interesting question.
Why I think I might like Writing.
Confusing Title right? If I didn’t like writing, I wouldn’t be writing this would I? I like writing, yes, but it’s something that isn’t easy for me. I’m the type of person who tries their best to keep their thoughts to themselves. That includes a lot of second-guessing as well. For example, I had an English assignment that said that I had to write a short fantasy story with all the things I learned in the story. I was against the idea of writing because I was lazy but somewhere in the back of my mind, I wanted to. I was afraid my mom might think I was weird, writing something that was so hidden in the back of my mind, something that I never showed to anyone except myself. I think throughout my entire life I have always been inside my head and nowhere else. I would create stories and characters in my mind. Some I thought were okay, and some I thought were so embarrassing that I couldn’t possibly write it out. But I ended up writing one of my fantasies out for the first time, all because of an English assignment.
She sat there on the warm park bench, eerily. Staring off into the distance, just trying to mentally uncover the unknown. Until it hit her.
My Eyes Seeing Inner Peace
The times I’ve felt the most at peace is writing and drawing out something that’s never been seen before, like being the first person to watch a movie that no one else has heard of. What I consider inner peace is when I’m happy, clear headed, and able to express that same feeling with my art and stories. For me that’s being able to create something from my imagination and turn it into something tangible that I can refer back to like recalling a wonderful dream. More times than not I’m by myself listening to music and in those times I sit back with my imagination and want to make something out of my thoughts, in my case it’s drawing. Something that helps me feel this inner peace is drawing and writing stories about my dreams from the nights before. Nothing to in depth like a lifelong dream but something that happened in my imagination while sleeping or listening to music that I can express through my art. I love to draw out the people or creatures I saw in my dream and give them a story that fits them and their different personalities. Sometimes in my dreams I’m viewing other people’s lives and sometimes I’m someone in the dream seeing it through their eyes. My true inner peace is when I can zone out and make those stories in my head and give them a form for myself to see and experience. It’s not always a dream that leads to me drawing and writing but it does make me feel at ease mentally and physically. This expression of creation is definitely something I’d consider a source of happiness that I enjoy for myself.
Minnie walked through life collecting moments and insignia and affirmations and energy from the universe, an understanding - unknowingly. Minnie walked through life without knowing that’s what she was collecting. She was collecting the future, past, present, the mother, maiden, crone.
Of Graveyards, Crustaceans, and Inner Peace
When the brain has stopped running and started tripping over itself, it’s time for the feet to step in. My love for walking was birthed in a graveyard. I grew up at the Rhine river between siren legends and castle ruins. Places of final rest are shared with the temporarily restful, those looking for a bench in the shade and a moment of peace. The graveyard near us was closer than any park, so I learned to love the orange-dipped leaves of dying trees, their crunch beneath my feet, among those long dead. The graveyard taught me the beauty of nature’s decay in winter, and that spring blossoms filled with stories. It was a quiet, contemplative place to most, but to me, every gravestone spoke. I’d stop at a stone and question my parents about the life behind the name. How old were they when they died? How did they die? How did they live?
Viola d' amore
When your parents get divorced, life gets really uncomfortable- really quickly. I was so lucky to have an outlet into which I could put this discomfort- in this case, the viola! The viola, while not the most popular musical instrument ever, is a sweet, alto-sounding, bigger version of a violin, and smaller version of a cello (I am playing the cello in the picture above!). I was enrolled in a fine arts class, like every seventh grader my age. This class was orchestra, and so I was allowed a viola to lug with me between my parents' houses (and later a viola AND a cello- oof.) On bad days, which were frequent, I would shut myself in my room, and play the same orchestra songs over and over. I wasn't taking lessons or doing it for homework- I just needed something to do while I hid from my chaotic world. Music was the perfect way to create a safe space, while outside my door fear reigned. Something about the mental and physical labor of constantly adjusting your fingers on the wooden fingerboard, and pulling your bow in just the right way to get to different strings in time, presented a superbly meditative challenge (of course, my 12-year-old brain didn't know this at the time), but I was so lucky to be able to spend hours in a room only thinking about playing the music in front of me correctly. Most experts on mindfulness would immediately agree with me that pairing physical and mental activity is a great recipe for optimal cognitive distraction- and a healthy one. I tell my students this now as well. Just as one might go for a walk, spend an hour meditating, or go to a yoga class, I would play my viola. It was my art form. It was like reading a good book that I was a part of. My eyes would track the notes like words on a page, and my fingers would work to sing out these words into beautiful phrases that told a story.
Anxious For Nothing
Confront the Chaos When Max Lucado described in his book the anxiety as “High-intensity fear—a malaise” even “A floating sense of dread” is because many times anxiety is seen in each of these forms, perhaps some other things that probably brings storms into our lives, or even worse, they want to steal peace.
The alarm begins to chime, rousing me abruptly from dreamless sleep. The peaceful piano notes, which seemed so soothing when I chose the tune, hammer on my ears like a gavel on a bench. It can’t possibly be time to wake up yet, I grumble to myself, I just went to sleep. But the clock doesn’t lie, it is time to start the day.
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